What is "Fleece" - Definition & Explanation
Last Updated on: 08-Jan-2023 (1 year, 5 months, 6 days ago)
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Throughout history, fleece has played a significant role in the textile industry, offering warmth, comfort, and versatility in a wide range of applications. This article explores the meaning, types, tips for handling, and profiles of top international users and manufacturers of fleece.

The Origin and History of Fleece

The origin of fleece can be traced back to ancient times when humans discovered the exceptional insulation properties of wool from sheep. Wool fleece, renowned for its softness and natural warmth, became a popular choice for clothing and textiles. Over time, advancements in technology led to the development of synthetic fleece, providing similar characteristics but with added benefits.

Types of Fleece

Fleece comes in various types, each with unique features and uses:

  1. Polar Fleece: Polar fleece is a synthetic fabric made from polyester fibers. It is known for its excellent insulation, lightweight nature, and quick-drying properties. Polar fleece is widely used in outdoor apparel, blankets, and accessories.
  2. Microfleece: Microfleece is a finer version of polar fleece, made with smaller polyester fibers. It offers enhanced softness, breathability, and moisture-wicking capabilities. Microfleece is commonly used in sportswear, base layers, and baby clothing.
  3. Coral Fleece: Coral fleece is a plush, velvety fabric that resembles the texture of coral. It is extremely soft, warm, and cozy, making it ideal for blankets, robes, and cold-weather accessories.
  4. Sherpa Fleece: Sherpa fleece, also known as faux shearling, is a heavyweight fabric with a fluffy, wool-like texture. It provides exceptional warmth and insulation and is often used in jackets, coats, and linings.

Tips for Handling Fleece

When working with fleece, it is essential to keep a few tips in mind:

  • Gentle Washing: Fleece should be washed with care to avoid pilling or damage. Use a gentle cycle and mild detergent, and avoid using fabric softeners.
  • Avoid High Heat: Fleece is sensitive to heat, so it is recommended to tumble dry on low heat or air dry. High temperatures can cause the fabric to shrink or lose its softness.
  • Remove Pilling: Over time, fleece may develop small balls of fibers called pills. Use a fabric shaver or a lint brush to remove them gently.
  • Store Properly: When not in use, fleece garments should be stored in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight to maintain their quality and prevent any odor or mildew issues.

Top International Users and Manufacturers of Fleece

Fleece is widely utilized by renowned international brands and manufacturers in the textile industry. Here are a few notable ones:

  1. Patagonia: Patagonia is a well-known outdoor clothing company that emphasizes sustainability. They offer a wide range of fleece products, including jackets, vests, and accessories, using recycled materials.
  2. The North Face: The North Face, a leading outdoor apparel brand, incorporates fleece in their collection, providing warmth and performance for outdoor enthusiasts.
  3. Columbia Sportswear: Columbia Sportswear is a global brand known for its innovative outdoor gear. They incorporate fleece technology in their garments to provide warmth and comfort in various weather conditions.
  4. Polartec: Polartec is a renowned manufacturer of performance fabrics, including fleece. Their high-quality materials are used by outdoor apparel companies worldwide.
  5. LL Bean: LL Bean offers a wide range of fleece products, including pullovers, blankets, and slippers. Their fleece items are known for their durability and warmth.


Fleece, with its rich history and versatility, continues to be a beloved fabric in the textile industry. From the ancient use of wool fleece to the modern development of synthetic variations, fleece provides warmth, comfort, and style in various forms. Understanding the types of fleece, handling tips, and the prominent international users and manufacturers in this field offers valuable insights into the diverse world of textile manufacturing and the significance of fleece in our daily lives.

A soft, bulky, deep-piled knitted or woven fabric of wool or cotton in a plain, twill, pile or knitted weave. Fleece has a deep, soft nap or pile obtained by heavily napping with wire brushes or with a pile weave. This provides air space giving good insulating properties without too much weight. The inter-lacing space is covered by the nap. The nap wears out in time, but good quality cloth gives good wear. Range from cheap to expensive clothes. Material is often cumbersome and bulky, therefore it may be difficult to manipulate.
1). A heavy napped surface, most often in knit goods, made with a heavy and soft-spun back yarn, which is napped in finishing (e.g. the inside surface of a sweatshirt).
2). Wool sheared from sheep or other animals in the wool class. The term is especially used for the entire coat of wool shorn from the sheep at one time; it is generally taken off the animal in one piece.

Some other terms

Some more terms:

A type of raised decoration applied to the surface of a fabric in which an adhesive is printed on the fabric in a specific pattern, and then finely chopped fibers are applied by means of dusting,...
Plisse 43
A fabric with a crinkied or puckered affect, generally in the direction to the warp, which is created either by tension weaving or through the application of a caustic soda solution which shrinks...
The production of a layer of protruding fibres on the surface of fabrics by brushing, teazling or rubbing. NOTE: The fabric, in open width, is passed between rotating rollers covered with teazles,...
Bombazine usually has silk or rayon warp and worsted filling. Imitations are made in cotton. Plain or twill. Very fine English fabric. Name comes from Latin "bombycinum" which means a silk in...
The woody inner core of the stalk, typically about 20-30% of the stalk. Bast fibres come in two varieties: primary, which are long in length and low in lignin content, and secondary which are medium...

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